|Autors: Lazarova, K., Boycheva, S. V., Vasileva, M., Zgureva, D. M., Georgieva, B., Babeva, T.|
Title: Acetone-sensitive thin films comprising coal fly ash Na-X zeolites and Sol–Gel Nb2O5 matrix
Keywords: acetone, sensing, optical sensor, coal fly ash zeolites, thin films, Nb2O5
Abstract: In this study, thin composite films of a sol–gel Nb2 O5 matrix doped with coal fly ash Na-X zeolites were deposited by the spin-coating method. Fly ash of lignite coal collected from the electrostatic precipitators of one of the biggest TPPs in Bulgaria was used as a raw material for obtaining zeolites. Zeolite Na-X was synthesized by ultrasonic-assisted double stage fusionhydrothermal alkaline conversion of coal fly ash. In order to improve the optical quality and sensing properties of the deposited thin films, synthesized zeolites were wet-milled for 60, 120, and 540 s prior to film deposition. The surface morphology of zeolite powders was studied both by scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy, while their porosity was investigated by N2-physisorption. Refractive index, extinction coefficient, and thickness of the films were determined through fitting of their reflectance spectra. The sensing ability of thin films towards acetone vapors was tested.
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